A second gunshot incident in same neighborhood within two months
For a second time in the past two months, gun violence erupted in a northern Brazil neighborhood.
Brazil Police Chief Clint McQueen confirmed there were no injuries in an incident that occurred in the area of homes along Charles B. Hall. shortly before 2 p.m. Saturday.
Initial reports to Clay County 911 Dispatch were a large fight was about to start in the neighborhood, which sent officials from the Brazil City Police and the Clay County Sheriff’s departments to the area.
Within moments of being dispatched, the officers were notified that several gun shots had been heard in the area.
“That puts officers into emergency mode,” said McQueen. “Officers are going to get there as fast as possible, and they are going to quickly shut the area down.”
There are three reasons for doing that, explained McQueen. First, it contains the area where the incident happened and the people involved. Second, the crime scene and any potential evidence can be secured. Third it helps maintain the safety of those around the area and stops people from entering a situation that has been dangerous and might still be.
“It’s all about maintaining public safety,” McQueen said. “And protecting the integrity of any potential investigation.”
However, the suspects involved in the incident were able to flee from the scene before officers arrived. The unidentified victims, along with several witnesses, remained on the scene.
During the subsequent investigation and interviews, two suspects were brought to the attention of the officers: Tommy Edmonson, who allegedly used a handgun to threaten a victim and then fired it while on the public street, and Alena Pastrick, for her alleged involvement at the incident and then helping Edmonson flee the scene before officials arrived.
“We are providing the case information to the Clay County Prosecutor’s Office and requesting arrest warrants be issued in this matter,” said McQueen. “This is the second time there has been violence in this area within weeks of each other, and there has been a person who openly fired a weapon on a public street during a violent altercation. The public has a right to know about it.”
McQueen said it is important to locate Edmonson and Pastrick quickly, however the public should be mindful of any interaction with these individuals.
“If the public knows where they are, call the dispatch center (812-446-2535) or dial 911,” said McQueen. “Report their location. You don’t have to interact with them. Be safe.”
On Sunday, McQueen said the public, especially homeowners and residents in the northern part of Brazil, will see an immediate heightened activity level by the police department.
“The public has a right to know that crime is happening in their area and law enforcement is aware and taking action. We are increasing patrols in the area and planning to have more of a presence in the area,” said McQueen. “Law enforcement is taking crimes with weapons used to threaten people or being fired in public very serious in our community.”
If a local resident notices suspicious or violent activity occurring in their neighborhood, McQueen said safety is paramount.
“They should get themselves, their family and children, immediately to safety. Either inside their home, or just leave the area by vehicle. Then, once at a safe place, call 911 and report the location and report exactly what they saw. That way we can get officers on the way there. But safety comes first, always.”